The Low Down on Austin Schools by Neighborhood

As a realtor, I get asked a lot which neighborhoods have the best public schools in Austin. As a parent of a preschooler here in Austin, I am currently struggling myself with the private school vs. public school dilemma as I live in an area with not so great public schools. It's amazing to me that there are a lot of neighborhoods in Austin where you can buy a million dollar home, but only have a lowly academically acceptable elementary school to send your children to! I love Central Austin and wouldn't move to out to the burbs for anything in the world, but that $600 per month I am likely going to shell out for private school for the next 8 years in order to avoid sending my child to the local elementary school is going to be painful.

So if you are looking for a neighborhood with good public schools in central Austin, here are the neighborhoods I would recommend buying in from the beginning:

BEST BETS - good public schools elementary through high school...

- Barton Hills

- Bryker Woods
- Rosedale
- Northwest Hills

- Highland Park
- Tarrytown

- Anywhere in Westlake -- Eanes School District...where every school is exemplary

- Crestview
- French Place
- Hyde Park (amazing LEE elementary but not so great middle school...KEALING)
- Clarksville
- Downtown Austin (PEASE elementary is apparently pretty neat with small class sizes)

...also to note, in Delwood, which is a quickly gentrifying East Side neighborhood, the public elementary school, Blanton Elementary, just received an exemplary rating from Texas Education Association for 2007. That neighborhood has great homes for the money and is extremely centrally located. Unfortunately, that neighborhood also has terrible middle school and high schools so don't plan on staying forever.

PLAN ON PRIVATE SCHOOL (at least I would)

- East Austin - 78702 zip code

- Travis Heights

That being said, I am sure there are parents of school age students who live in these neighborhoods and who might disagree with my opinion. Please leave a comment as I am eager to learn more.

All Texas public school TEA ratings can be found here.

Thanks to woodleywonderworks on flickr.com for the pic.

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